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The good, the bad, and the ugly.... solitude vs. loneliness

I learned the hard way that there is a very delicate line between solitude and loneliness.

In the first few years of solitude that followed my divorce, I felt both. My children had grown and were in college, and I bought a bicycle and moved to a small apartment where I could bike to work. Riding around on my own felt empowering.... to be alone and not responsible for anyone else felt good at first.... but I didn't anticipate the crash.

I am the kind of person who enjoys solitude. I am comfortable and often crave the comforts of being by myself. However, there was a moment on Christmas Day soon after my divorce that I found myself sitting on the couch at night alone.... and solitude had turned to bitter loneliness.
My mother-in-law had given me one of those silly blankets with arms... a "snuggie", I think it was called. I curled up and wrapped myself in a cocoon-like hug and cried.

Even though I had experienced some amazing and powerful law of attraction paradigm shifts in my life, I still was not able to get myself out of that moment. The moment I realized that I needed to surround myself with other people.

I had moved to a new place, and I lived in a neighborhood where I knew nobody. At first it was an incredible act of freedom, but soon it turned into deep grieving. I missed my family, my friends, my community, and my identity.

Bouncing back from solitude is a slow journey that stirs up all of the emotions. I learned that emotions are the key to finding out what it is that I DO want. Today, I found this on the internet and it reminded me how important the BAD feelings are....

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